Peruvian banker Susana de la Puente Wiese has built a lengthy professional career in the world of Private Investment Banking and finance.
Susana de la Puente Wiese began her career in New York, specifically at JP Morgan, and in less than a decade of working for the multinational, she was named Senior Banker and Director of JP Morgan, Peru.
Shortly thereafter, she was chosen as the General Director and Vice President of JP Morgan Chase for the Andean Region, Central America, and the Caribbean, and Vice Chairman for Latin America until 2007.
Furthermore, throughout her career, she has been part of the boards of numerous significant companies in the sector, such as Hypatia Capital and the Wiese Group.
During the early 2000s, she assumed other important positions, including Director of Telefónica Peru, member of the Advisory Committee to the President of the Board of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and Director of the Peruvian Institute of Business Administration (IPAE).
Starting from 2010, she balances her high-level management activities in large companies with the foundation and leadership of socially impactful enterprises.
A Strong Advocate for High-Impact Social Projects
Susana de la Puente’s interest in the business and corporate world gradually shifted towards specific types of projects: companies and initiatives with high social impact.
In the new millennium, she founded Futura Schools, a project focused on schools with the goal of becoming a national reference in this sector, training citizens to become leaders, competitive, innovative, and globally empathetic.
In 2015, she was appointed Director of LUMNI, a company with significant social impact that aims to provide quality education access to students who cannot afford their studies. LUMNI finances a portion of education expenses for students who commit to repaying the funding once they secure paid employment.
Another high-impact social project she has been a part of as a member of the Advisory Committee is Laboratoria, an initiative that offers young women from low-income backgrounds a career in technology that transforms their future.
For her significant contributions to high-impact social enterprises, she was recognized as Director of OWIT – PERU and Director of Pro Mujer-Peru, an NGO dedicated to women-led microfinance initiatives in Latin America.
She has also held other positions, including Director of the NGO AcciónComunitaria del Perú, Director of the NGO CARE, and Director of Lumni Peru.
Belonging to a Family with a Strong Financial Tradition
Her rich professional trajectory is influenced by her family heritage, as De la Puente is a part of one of the most influential families in Peru. Susana de la Puente Wiese is the daughter of former Minister Gonzalo de la Puente Lavalle and Clotilde Wiese Osma. Among the most influential members of her family is her paternal grandfather, the founder of Banco Wiese, jurist Manuel de la Puente y Lavalle, and former mayor of Lima, Susana Villarán de la Puente.
Susana de la Puente Wiese, a Pioneer for Women on Wall Street
The 1980s and 1990s were decades when the financial sector reached unprecedented heights, especially in major financial centers like Wall Street and London’s City. However, despite this, female representation was nearly non-existent. This made Susana de la Puente a “rare bird” of that era. Susana herself recalls that time with these words:
“I’ve had a wonderful career in banking. The truth is, I was lucky because I was in the 1990s, which was the moment when Latin America and Peru became integrated into the financial world… and I was the only Peruvian woman on Wall Street,” she stated in one of her rare interviews with Caretas magazine.
Named One of the 50 Most Influential Women of the New Millennium
For her significant role in transforming the Latin American financial landscape, in May 1999, Susana de la Puente was named one of the 50 leaders for the new millennium by Time magazine in the United States. She participated in some of the region’s largest transactions, including the privatizations of the 1990s and mergers and acquisitions over the past 30 years.
De la Puente also contributed to opening capital markets to issuers from the region. She led the first issuance of Eurobonds for a Latin American corporation, CEMEX, in 1989. She also led the first Eurobond for Venezuela in 1999 and the first IPO of a Peruvian company on the New York Stock Exchange, among other transactions in the global capital market.
Passionate About Art
Among Susana de la Puente’s well-known passions is art. “Art is an important part of my life and my investments (…). I always buy what I like, but I also do it in an organized and disciplined manner, forming a collection and believing that it can appreciate in value,” she said in an interview with CADE.
This passion has led her to accept positions within some of the most important artistic and cultural institutions in her country, such as serving as Director of the Museum of Art of Lima and El Museo del Barrio in New York.